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Panic Not – insurance for homes which are 'unusual'

Obtaining insurance for either 'unusual' or high net worth properties is always a minefield, and one which takes a lot of research. A property which is listed, timber framed, has a flat roof, situated on a flood plain, underpinned – the list is comprehensive – can be classed as being 'unusual'. There is another addition to this list now, and that is a property with a panic room: these rooms are often incorporated into high value properties or properties which are perhaps very different from our normal dwellings.

Panic rooms are not something you would normally associate with your standard family semi, but they are actually on the increase, perhaps not strongly in this particular market sector, but they are definitely 'trending'.

Panic rooms are not just a recent fad for the rich and famous: in fact they have been an integral part of households from every price bracket throughout the ages. From hidey-holes in the smallest hovels, to intricate networks of secret passages in the largest and most prestigious estates, panic rooms and hidden places have a well documented history. Obviously this doesn't mean that they have a place in every home, and having a panic room is unlikely to more impact on your insurance more than say an insurer approved door/window locks and a decent alarm system.

Most people who will be looking to install a panic room will be those who are worth more than the items insured in their home. In situations where invaders might attempt to force information from you, perhaps pin numbers/password that give access to accounts which contain vast wealth – or perhaps details of security access to your place of employment, a panic room may help you considerably. For the vast majority of people, normal home security and comprehensive property insurance should suffice. However there will always be other instance where a panic room might be a must-have investment.

In areas where the average home invasion is likely to turn ugly, a panic room could be the difference between life and death. One panic room supplier lists the Middle East and South Africa as places where sales are particularly high – but do we really face the same risk in the UK? Thankfully, we do not, but the same supplier also points out that panic rooms are ideal places to store valuables over periods when you may be away – which is actually a good idea and may well reflect positively in your next insurance quote, especially if your insurance cover is for an 'unusual' property.

The same supplier also states that you can have earthquake-proof fortress panic rooms, capable of withstanding magnum fire, for less than £30,000 – but for most British homeowners, this may be just a little over-kill! However, these rooms are easy to fit into almost any spare space and you do not need planning permission in the UK. However, if you are in the 'unusual' property sectors already, then it would be wise to contact your insurers.

If you have an 'unusual' property and you absolutely have to have somewhere to hide within your home, a panic room could be the perfect home improvement purchase. If you have any kind of high-end or unusual home, you may find it hard to secure adequate property insurance. In this case, take professional advice: Westhill Insurance Services can advise on insurance for all types of unusual properties from listed properties to high value worth and unusual residences. One call to our knowledgeable team will allow you to discuss exactly your requirements and to understand the level of cover you require. We have vast experience within the property insurance and market and can certainly remove the panic that insuring unusual properties can cause. One quick call will allow us to provide the information you need to make an informed decision on your insurance requirements and we are happy to meet and advise if you so wish.

Contact Westhill Insurance Services, today.

Posted on 5th December, 2012